Public administration is in charge of implementing the policies that are formulated by the government the programs that implement these policies. The duties of a public administration include among others the dispensation and management of public facilities and programs, transforming the political structure of the government into a day-to-day experience that intends to improve the lives of its citizens. The conduct and professionalism of the public administrators are also included in this package of public administration, with it being the face representing the government and its said policies. The public administrators are civil servants who are employed in various departments in the government in order to serve the public. These departments include the defense force, law maintenance, society welfare amongst others. These representatives of the government administration operate on all levels of the government. The problems in the public administration have been present as long as the public service existed and Nigeria and the United States of America have not been a option. The public administration system of Nigeria and the US compared in more than one way and there were different problems that faced both of these systems both historically and presently.[1]

Historical background of Public administration of the US

The History of the US public administration has come a long way and has undergone tremendous changes. In history, the American public administration believed in transformation and development. These transformations were aimed at bringing progress to the ideas and their implementation too. Various theories have guided the operations of the American public Administration and the theories saw this administration to what it is today. At the end of the civil war, there was a major reign in political patronage and a US citizen, William Essay pushed for the segregation of politics from administration. He insisted that this department should be business-oriented in order to carry out its tasks successfully and cheaply. There was a push for the improvement of the government’s role and this laid emphasis on the local government.

The 1940`s brought the transformation of the department by focusing on human behavior. This was aimed at training the civil servants on proper conduct and professionalism and the ways that they could use to meet the expectations of the public. The experts insisted on engaging the public servants instead of just making them to work. This active participation made them to be active and commit to their role as administrators. Another row in the public administration of the US was the division between the efficacy and democracy of the system. The system was originally focused on efficiency but the introduction of democracy seemed to increase the cost of operations.

Historical background of the public administration of Nigeria

The public administration department of Nigeria is one of the major aspects of the country`s history and it begins from back in 1962 with the birth of Ahmadu Bello University. This university introduced courses on public administration to would be administrators both in the public and private wings of this department. This University went on to produce academically equipped administrators with a solid ground for effective productivity. Its constitution was formed and enacted in 1979 which is still partially applicable today and this constitution though reviews are in process. The legal system of the country was based on laws of tribal, Islamic and English common law[2]. With the country being the most populous country in Africa, the country is faced with a burden to cater for all the needs of its population and satisfy their administrational needs. Nigeria has transformed in its policies that offer more and safer security of its people by modifying the defense system [3].

How the public administration of Nigeria and the US compare.

Both of these countries hold similarities in that they have ensured that trade relations among them remain strong. These two countries form a solid diplomatic partnership that fosters economic benefits that bring cohesion among these two communities. The bilateral relationship between these two states was strengthened by General Abubakar who worked hard to establish the trade relations. The benefits of the good relationship was beneficial in many ways since the restrictions of visas was lifted and therefore the government officials from Nigeria could travel to the US for official purposes that were of help to the country. [4]There were discussions on the future of these countries through economic assistance from the US. These funds went to health and educational facilities and infrastructure too. This increased the efficacy of the Nigerian administration to its citizens. The Obasanjo government, when came to power ensured that the relations were strengthened further and Nigeria offered a lot of support to the US in terms of fighting terrorism and most especially after the September 11 bomb attack that was experienced in America. Nigeria has been actively against the Al-Qaeda and Taliban by using its military to trace and identify these suspects that are enemies to administrative development and national development. This war on terrorism has seen more than one million Nigerians who live and work in America while an estimated 25,000 Americans live in Nigeria.[5].

Both of these countries have similarities of engaging the public administrators in forums and training sessions that attempt to increase the quality of the services offered to the citizens. A good example is the defense forces and the military that have to be trained regularly on the latest methods of identifying criminal and fighting crimes of all types. The military have to be trained on how to use and operate latest weapons of war than come with inventions. With the intelligence and crime fighting department of the US taking the lead in crime eradicating globally, the US has passed on some of its techniques and knowledge on crime eradication. One of these methods is use of forensic science to determine and solve criminal puzzles.[6]

Problems/solutions to the public administrations of US and Nigeria.

These two administrative powers have challenges that face their administrative role in public dispensation. One of these challenges is health issues that are common to the two states. Providing free and efficient medical care to all its citizens has proven   difficult and especially to Nigeria who has a very large population of about 80 million. Most of the population cannot afford medical care due to challenges of poverty. The government of Nigeria has coordinated with the World Health Organization which offers medical support in terms of facilities, services and even funds. These international bodies focus o major health issues like eye problems, HIV/AIDS amongst others. In the US, the health issue, though not as bad as Nigeria is still of major concern to the government since not all Americans can easily access public medical care since it is sometimes inefficient or inaccessible. President Obama, during his previous term however fought against this health challenge by implementing the “Obama health Act 2013” which caters for the health of the Americans and whose records can be accessed from any facility through an Electronic Health Records system. The health menace, being a major challenge both in and out of Africa should be prioritized by these countries and this means that the public Administration of any country should lay emphasis on improving the health sector at all costs since health is the basis of life.













Otenyo, Eric . Comparative Public Administration: The Essential Readings. (Amsterdam [u.a.]: Elsevier JAI, 2006)

 Balogun, M. J.  Public Administration in Nigeria: A Developmental Approach. (Lagos: Macmillan Nigeria, 1983).

 Harris, P. Foundations of Public Administration: A Comparative Approach. (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 1990).

Achebe, C. The Trouble with Nigeria. (London: Heinemann Educational Books, 1984).

Pierre, J.  & Guy P. B. The SAGE Handbook of Public Administration. (London: SAGE, 2012).




[1] Harris, P.  Foundations of Public Administration: A Comparative Approach. (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 1990) 26.


[2]See Pierre, J.  & Guy P. B. The SAGE Handbook of Public Administration. (London: SAGE, 2012).


[3]Balogun, M. J.  Public Administration in Nigeria: A Developmental Approach. (Lagos: Macmillan Nigeria, 1983) 33.


[4] Achebe, C. The Trouble with Nigeria. (London: Heinemann Educational Books, 1984) 37.


[5] Otenyo, E. Comparative Public Administration: The Essential Readings. (Amsterdam [u.a.]: Elsevier JAI, 2006) 11.




  1. Wilson Okwori February 28, 2014 / 4:56 pm

    you derailed from your topic where you discussed how public administration in Nigeria and USA compare

  2. ABEL EBERE October 9, 2015 / 7:57 am


  3. MUAZU HALILU May 12, 2016 / 9:08 am


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